The Better Business Bureau of Southern Alberta and East Kootenay is warning consumers to do their research when they make donations to charitable organizations. With the recent Haiti earthquake and those stuck in Afghanistan from the recent Taliban attacks, there is a desire to help those who need it. Wes Lafortune, the Communications Specialist for the BBB, says there are important tips for you to consider when you think about making a donation to make sure the funds get to the ground.
The BBB provided a list of tips for consumers, and you can view them below.
- Look into the history of the charity’s work. Experience is key to providing effective aid.
- Watch out for organizations that give vague descriptions of where funds will go. Communication regarding donation use and funding distribution should be provided.
- Visit the charity’s website to see their mission statement. You can also look for a list of their Board of Directors and review their latest financial statements.
- You may be eligible for a charitable tax receipt. Ask the organization about official donation receipts.
- Check their name carefully. Some groups intentionally try to sound like a more high-profile, reputable charity in hopes you will not notice that they are not the organization you intend to donate to.
- Cash is better than donating goods. A gift of money to an organization allows flexibility so that aid can go to where it is needed most.
- Check whether your employer has an employer-match policy to increase your donation’s impact.
- Check out the organization you’re considering donating to. Look them up at Give.org to see if they meet BBB’s 20 Standards for Charity Accountability.
You can visit https://give.org/ to see a full list of charities that are operating out of Afghanistan and Haiti.